North Korea marked the 107th anniversary of the birth of its founder Kim Il Sung, on Monday, with no obvious provocation of the United States, despite the second denuclearization summit between the two countries collapsing in February.
Special to The Yomiuri ShimbunIn the wake of the failed Hanoi summit meeting in February, the US -led worldwide coalition is strengthening the economic sanctions program directed at North Korea.
In a speech to Pyongyang's rubber-stamp parliament on Friday, Kim said the Hanoi meeting raised questions about Washington's intention but added he will wait until the end of the year for the USA to make "a courageous decision". "The big deal is we have to get rid of the nuclear weapons", Trump explained.
North Korea has held a series of sports and cultural events over the past few days.
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In Hanoi, talks between Washington and Pyongyang broke down after the United States refused a North Korean offer to grant access to American inspectors to key plutonium and uranium-production facilities at the Yongbyon nuclear complex in exchange for relief from a wide-range of United Nations Security Council resolution sanctions pertaining to North Korea's civilian economy. According to the agency, the Russia-North Korea summit is likely to be held in the Far Eastern city of Vladivostok.
Since Moon told Trump that he will push for another inter-Korean summit in line with Trump's desire to continue talks with the North, the South Korean president is expected to emphasize the need for dialogue during Monday's meeting.
Kim said in his Friday speech that the South must end its dependence on the United States, but Moon stressed Monday the importance of the South-U.S. alliance.
Kim's speech came after North Korea's Supreme People's Assembly made a slew of personnel changes that bolstered Kim's diplomatic lineup.
The United States is "is still shunning the withdrawal of its hostile policy, the fundamental way of establishing the new DPRK-U.S. relations, and miscalculating that it can bring us to our knees if it puts maximum pressure on us", Kim said. Experts said this could be a sign of his desire to keep recent months of up-and-down nuclear diplomacy alive rather than returning to the threats and weapons tests that characterized 2017, when many feared possible war on the Korean Peninsula.